If you’ve never watched the BBC’s Doctor Who, you’re missing out on one of the best long lived stories of our modern age. It’s not a kids show, it’s not a sci-fi show, it’s not a show for geeks or just a show for guys. It’s a show for everyone in the family, of every age and from every walk of life.
It’s viewed by over 7.7million people on 6 different continents, through 75 different countries. The 50th Anniversary Special was simulcast around the world from Canada to Colombia, Brazil to Botswana and Myanmar to Mexico and more.
If that many people have supported and tuned in year after year, then that should be proof enough to anyone that the tales of the Doctor not only endure space and time, they bring entertainment and even hope to many who love the Doctors, the companions, the friends and the villains.
For the few who may read this and don’t know, the Doctor is a Time Lord who doesn’t die. His physical body can regenerate carrying forward his knowledge and memories from one version of himself to the next. He has lived for 100s of years, traveling the Universe with plain ole Earthlings he meets along the way. They share in exciting travels, adventures and dangers, humor, sadness and even scary moments. Within the show there have been 12 Doctors, the most recent being Matt Smith.
I’ve come to notice that who your favorite Doctor is, depends on who the Doctor was when you first began watching the show. For me, that was Christopher Eccleston. For my Man, that was the Tom Baker the 4th Doctor. Our son has watched Doctor Who with us, but as a young child he wasn’t old enough to really get into the stories or characters until the 11th Doctor. And supporting my theory, his favorite is the 11th, Matt Smith.
Often it’s not only the Doctor who wiggles their way into your emotional entertainment heart, but their Companions too. The child sticks with the 11th Doctor and his companion Amy Pond (played by Karen Gillan). I follow that same connection of who the companion was of my favorite Doctor is also my favorite. So that would be Rose Tyler (played by Billie Piper), who will always be my favorite. The Man breaks the mold however, his favorite has been Amy Pond. But he doesn’t count out Rose, Sarah Jane Smith (played by Elisabeth Sladen) and Romana (played by Mary Tamm Lalla Ward) who were companions of the his favorite Tom Baker/Doctor. Well he has been watching the show since the late 70s. I guess he’s entitled to have more than one favorite.
Each time the Doctor regenerates it’s an emotional roller coaster of a ride. Saying good-bye to a character you’ve become used to like a member of your family isn’t easy. It’s amazing how many people care for the Doctor and let the tears fall when he leaves and makes way for the next regenerated incarnation. And for the few episode of the new Doctor there’s a feeling of uneasiness. You’re not sure if this new Doctor will do justice to your beloved friend. He’s scrutinized and critiqued against an insurmountable standard that would be hard for any human to live up to.
But this is the Doctor we’re talking about. He makes his way into your heart and you want to tell him it’s going to be ok. After a few short episodes you are just as enthralled with your new Doctor and you want him to know you’re on his side. He will never live up to your favorite Doctor, but he still works his way into your heart and you hope this time he’ll be around for a long time to come. With all his quirkiness, silly facial expressions, disturbing glances and concerned looks, you get used to his particular flair and charisma. He becomes an endearing part of your weekly moments of relaxation and vegging out in front of the TV.
I’ve loved each Doctor since Christopher Eccleston. Though he will always be my favorite, I’ve come to care for the 10th excellently played by David Tennent and 11th Doctor portrayed by Matt Smith. I’m so very glad they both agreed to appear in the 50th Anniversary special episode The Day of the Doctor. By the way, that episode set a Guinness World Record.
This evening, here on Christmas Night of 2013, the 11th Doctor says good-bye. By the end of the evening, you find yourself with tears running down your face, sorry and sad to see him go. I wasn’t sure about the 11th Doctor, but like so many people around the world he quickly grew on us. Now that he has said good-bye, everyone in our house would like to say “Good Job Mr. Smith! We’re sad to see you go!”